Born in Oklahoma but raised in North Carolina, now-prolific artist Patrick Dougherty first studied English before later returning to school to become a sculptor. Since then, the nature-loving carpenter has built over 230 sculptures and installations and has seen them exhibited worldwide. Each piece is the result of the combination of the artist’s love of nature and traditional use of natural materials, plus his knowledge of – for lack of a better term – primitive building techniques.
Recently, the artist and assistants created “Ballroom,” a piece of monumental architecture made up of more willow tree branches than I would care to count. Cathedral-like, the construction sits in Melbourne’s Federation Square near St. Paul’s Cathedral. The interactive installation, which will be open to the public through early 2013, was made with willow saplings culled from the Australian state of Victoria for conservation reasons.
Photographs are by Melbourne Water, Federation Square, and Liz Jones.